PHILADELPHIA — Army and Navy renew their long rivalry today at Lincoln Financial Field (2:30, Ch. 10), and the Black Knights are looking for a breakthrough.
Navy has beaten Army eight consecutive times (the longest win streak by either team in the series) and holds a 54-49-7 advantage in the series.
But you wouldn't know it by listening to Army. The Black Knights (6-5), after all, are bowl bound for the first time in 14 years. As a result, they are brimming with confidence.
"We're a better team (than last year)," senior defensive end Josh McNary said. "We will redeem ourselves. We will win. There is no next time for us. It's the last game."
Navy's win streak began with a 58-12 rout in 2002. The scores that followed aren't pretty, either: 34-6, 42-13, 42-23, 26-14, 38-3, 34-0 and 17-3.
"Clearly, (beating Navy) is something that's been missing in their time here, something that they can't wait for another opportunity to right the balance sheet," Army coach Rich Ellerson said. "Eight is enough."
Take a closer look, and it's even more impressive.
The Middies (8-3) have surrendered just six points over the past three games and have not allowed a touchdown since the fourth quarter of the 2006 game.
"That's what we live for, not giving up points," Navy senior cornerback Kevin Edwards said. If we can … not give up a touchdown again, I think that would make the win even sweeter."
Huskers coach denies talking to Hurricanes
Nebraska coach Bo Pelini said he is not "preparing to interview" for the Miami coaching job.
The South Florida Sun Sentinel reported Thursday that Pelini had spoken with Miami athletic director Kirby Hocutt, an associate athletic director at Oklahoma in 2004 when Pelini was co-defensive coordinator there.
But Pelini and Nebraska athletic director Tom Osborne issued a joint statement Friday denying that report.
Meanwhile, the Miami Herald reported that Miami is focusing on three candidates: Temple coach Al Golden, Connecticut coach Randy Edsall, and Marc Trestman, coach of the Canadian Football League's Montreal Alouettes. It added that a decision is expected in the next few days.
Trestman was a Miami assistant from 1981-84, coaching quarterback Bernie Kosar during Miami's first national title season in 1983. He has remained close with Kosar, who is on the school's board of trustees. He also has been an assistant in the NFL, including quarterbacks coach for the Dolphins in 2004.
Hawaii changing conferences: Hawaii is leaving the WAC, where it played for 32 years, for the Mountain West in football and Big West in other sports starting in 2012. The WAC already has lost Boise State (for 2011), Nevada (2012) and Fresno State (2012) to the Mountain West. It is adding Texas-San Antonio, Texas State and Denver in 2012. (Denver doesn't have a football team.) But Hawaii athletic director Jim Donovan expressed concern that the WAC was moving toward the Central Time Zone with the additions, which would increase travel costs. WAC commissioner Karl Benson had no response to the announcement. The Mountain West will be losing Brigham Young (independent), Utah (Pac-10), and Texas Christian (Big East).
Kentucky: Quarterback Mike Hartline pleaded not guilty to charges of disorderly conduct and alcohol intoxication after being arrested early Friday morning. He and Ashley Carnes were arrested after an argument with another woman. Carnes, 20, a Kentucky cheerleader, pleaded not guilty to disorderly conduct, alcohol intoxication, underage drinking and attempting to use false identification to obtain alcohol. A pretrial hearing for both was set for Jan. 24. The school said coach Joker Phillips was aware of the situation.
USF: Offensive coordinator Todd Fitch said he hasn't been contacted about the Kent State coaching vacancy. Yahoo Sports reported Wednesday that Fitch, an Ohio native, would interview to replace Doug Martin, who resigned.
Vanderbilt: The Tennessean reported Auburn offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn was offered about $3 million annually to become the Commodores' coach. Malzahn was unavailable for comment. The Tennessean also reported Maryland offensive coordinator James Franklin is the other top candidate.
Paul Hornung Award: Kentucky receiver Randall Cobb, Stanford fullback/linebacker Owen Marecic and TCU receiver Jeremy Kerley are finalists for the inaugural award that will be given to the nation's most versatile player on Jan. 25. Cobb had more than 1,500 yards of total offense and 16 touchdowns at receiver and quarterback. Marecic averaged 110 plays a game going both ways. Kerley led the Mountain West at 123 all-purpose yards per game and also had 10 touchdown catches.
I-AA playoffs: Pat Devlin threw two second-half touchdowns as host Delaware beat New Hampshire 16-3 in the quarterfinals. The Blue Hens face the winner of today's game between Wofford and Georgia Southern.
No. 1 Florida upset in NCAA volleyball
AUSTIN, Texas — Ariel Turner had 18 kills to lead Purdue past top seed Florida 28-26, 25-15, 25-19 in the round of 16 of the NCAA volleyball tournament.
The Gators (29-2), No. 1 in the American Volleyball Coaches Association poll, blew a 24-20 lead in the first set. They then fell behind 7-0 in the second set and 7-3 in the third.
"It was really unfortunate that we weren't able to put away Set 1," Florida coach Mary Wise said. "It was a major deflation, and we never really rebounded."
Men's soccer: Freshman Aaron Horton's last-minute goal gave Louisville a 2-1 victory over North Carolina in the national semifinals in Santa Barbara, Calif. Last week, Horton scored in the final minute of the Cardinals' 5-4 quarterfinal win over UCLA. On Sunday the Cardinals face the winner of Friday's late game between Akron and Michigan.
Times staff writer Greg Auman contributed to this report.